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View Full Version : Our 1st WDW Family Vacation 11/8-11/19 Part 1


Lisa3
11-24-2000, 01:15 PM
I have never written a trip report before and after reading everyone else's, I am not sure how interesting mine will be but I thought I'd give it a try (please be kind).

WHO WE ARE: DH age 41 and myself age 39 both of whom have been to WDW before without children.
DS age 7, DD age 5 and DS age 4 all first timers.

HOW WE TRAVELED: We decided that if we wanted to stay in the park (and we did) that flying was not an option. We had driven from NJ before and we would drive again this time. Being on a tight budget we borrowed a car top carrier from a friend, packed up the car and left at 11:00 pm Wednesday night. Mistake #1 - if you borrow something for a trip, try it out ahead of time. The noise from the straps of the car top carrier were so deafening that we turned around and came back home. After dumping the kids back into their beds, I searched the internet to find a new car top carrier at a local dealer. At 8:00 am I was on the phone to find out availability and if someone could install it for us (we just wanted to be on our way). By 10:00 am we were again packed and on our way in a much quieter car. We drove to Florence SC and stopped about 1:00 am for the night.

Friday's drive from SC to Orlando was very long. We spend 1 1/2 hours in traffic in Orlando. We arrived at DxL at 6:00 pm, had dinner in the Food Court and went to our room.

WHERE WE STAYED: DxL was a very pleasant surprise. The room was plenty big enough for the 5 of us. I unpacked all of our clothes which made life easier for the rest of the week. We liked the rustic atmosphere and DH being a landscaper loved the grounds (we wish we had more time to explore). Checking in was very simple and we thought the Food Court was great (a definate yes to the refillable mugs). One word of warning: if you have a small child who rolls around alot at night, beware of the trundle bed. When I checked on the kids the first night (as a mother usually does), the trundle where my 4 year old was sleeping was empty! After reassuring myself that he couldn't have gotten out of the room, I started searching and found that he had rolled under the other bed. Luckily, I found him before he woke up and was scared. After that, we wedged the two bedspreads between the trundle and the other bed so that he couldn't get trapped again (never a dull moment in this family).

WHAT WE DID: Having some kind of plan for the day was one of the best things we did. While we did not always adhere to the plans, at least we knew what was important for us to see and we could readjust according to tiredness and crowds - yes there were crowds in November, more than I thought there would be.

DAY 1 (Saturday) AK then MK - We loved AK! This park is definately more relaxed than the others and was a good starting point for our family. We used Disney Transportation (the best), arrived at 8:00 am and headed to the safari first as suggested by these boards. Wait time was only 10 minutes at most and the morning and the animals were beautiful. Next we headed over to Dinoland USA for a Fastpass of Countdown to Extinction and Donald's Breakfastsaurus. The food was o.k., the characters were great and the picture they took out front was one of our best family pictures ever. Mistake #2 - DO NOT take small children on Countdown to Extinction! This ride is very intense. My DD had the good sense to stay off but my DSs (7 & 4) were terrified (and they love dinosaurs). We spend the rest of the week convincing our DS(4) that everything that is dark is not frightening. Tarzan Rocks is the best show we saw. Kids loved the Boneyard, the walk through Asia, and Pocahontas & Her Friends in Camp Minney & Mickey. Lion King was O.K. but would have been better with closer seats. Kali River Rapids soaked DH and DS(7) so they went a second time and we headed back to DxL to change before going to MK for MSEP. This was EXTREMELY crowded. Kids could not see and were very disappointed. We would try again at the end of the week.

See Part 2 of our vacation for the rest of our story :cool: :eek:

snuggles
11-25-2000, 04:16 AM
See your first trip report isnt that hard is it? You are doing a wonderful job. :D I'm glad to hear that you like Dixie Landings. We are staying there for the first time in May. Cant wait to read the next part...

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mango
11-25-2000, 05:11 AM
Looking forward to the rest of the reports. Sounds like a good start to the trip. :)

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3D Disney
11-25-2000, 05:30 AM
A great start Lisa3. Very interesting. I will be watching to read about the rest of your trip. :cool:

danny1649
11-25-2000, 06:44 AM
Good report,informational and well written keep it up.

Lisa3
11-26-2000, 05:37 PM
Bump - just keeping things together.

LisaTx
11-28-2000, 06:24 AM
This is a great first trip report. :)

Sorry about the bumpy start with the car carrier.
I'm glad you worked it out ok.

Thanks for sharing your trip with us. I'm looking forward to more.

Lisa :)

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Blondie
11-28-2000, 08:42 AM
We always drive (well, with the exception of once!) and our last two trips, we borrowed a friend's cartop luggage carrier. The last time, we borrowed from a different friend, and it wasn't as big as the first one we borrowed, we found out too late!

Also there was a screw missing, so as we were driving down the road, it lifted somewhat. We had lots of people beeping at us and pointing to our roof. We just shook our heads in the yes motion, and mouthed the words "we know!" What a hassle, we knew it wasn't going anywhere, but I guess they were just trying to be helpful!

On the way back, DH fixed it so that we wouldn't have to put up with that again, LOL!

You're doing a great job on your trip reports, keep up the good work!

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Marla Hellwig
01-13-2001, 04:22 PM
Your trip is off to a good start. Thanks for posting!

aimeesmom2
01-13-2001, 05:04 PM
I'm just now getting to reading your posts, thought I would start with your first one and so far it sounds great!!

We too did AK the first day when we went on our first trip last March and it was wonderful..

I agree that the Dinosaur ride is pretty intense for small children.. We rode it twice.. The first day we arrived, we sat in the back of the ride and it did not seem so bad.. we went back to AK the day we left as we had a late flight and we ended up in the front and I almost had a heart attack!! It was fun, but seemed much scarier to me the second time and very loud.. I LOVED it, but I do agree it would be pretty scary for a little one...

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DarPa
01-13-2001, 07:19 PM
Nice trip report! I was very interested in your car top carrier experience!We too are driving from Pa. in June 2001! It will be our 1st trip with our van and we decided to give more room inside for DD's by renting a carrier. I have yet to look into this and have no idea where to look to rent one. How did you go about finding one? They did install it for you? What was the cost of rental? Also I had asked about Tarzan rocks on another board and so far I haven't heard anything on it. You said it was the best show you saw! Please more info on it! It was closed in May last year during our trip and we are very interested in seeing it in June 2001! Thanks so much! Can't wait to hear about the rest of your trip!

Mamu
01-14-2001, 03:59 AM
Great trip report. Thanks for posting. Looking forward to reading them all.

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